Things are Gonna Get Easier: Sixers Head to Cleveland

Things are Gonna Get Easier: Sixers Head to Cleveland

4-3. Not bad for a seven-game death stretch, though not necessarily as
decisive as we would've hoped when the Sixers started the stretch 4-1.
Back-to-back tough losses against the Spurs and Clippers—one in which
the Sixers got legitimately outplayed, and one in which a bunch of crap
went wrong for both teams and the Sixers lost because Chris Paul might
be the deadliest player in the game with less than a minute left in
regulalation—make the seven-game set a slightly mixed bag, though on the
whole, you'd probably still have to consider it a victory for Philly.
They're still 18-9, third-best in the East—and tonight, they get to play
their first creampuff match in two weeks with the Cleveland Cavaliers.

All right, "creampuff" might be going a bit far. The Cavs are actually
having a surprisingly acceptable season this year, just two-and-a-half
games out of the playoffs with their 10-15 record, and just a couple
nights ago they even beat the Clippers, which by some transitive
mathematical properties might make them a better team than the Sixers,
technically. Of course, they've also lost to the Raptors, Warriors and
Nets, and they'll be missing both their likely Rookie of the Year point
guard Kyrie Irving and their MVP of the last few weeks, hustling big man
Anderson Varejao. After going against Tony Parker & Tim Duncan and
Chris Paul & Blake Griffin, somehow I doubt the Sixers are
particularly sweating Ramon Sessions & Antawn Jamison.

Nonetheless, the Sixers are somewhat untested on the road this year—5-4,
against 13-5 at home—and the post-LeBron Cavs took two games against
the Sixers last year, including one in Cleveland. With the Sixers
finally looking to spend some time away from the Wells Fargo Center—they
play seven of their next eight games on the road, after playing 17 of
22 at home—a decisive win against Cleveland would obviously be a great
way to kick off the next leg of the Sixers' season. (Hopefully this will
also be a chance for young bigs Nikola Vucevic and Lavoy Allen to put
up some numbers after getting shut down by the San Antonio and LA front
lines, while perhaps Coach Collins won't be as stingy as he has been
lately with Evan Turner's minutes.)

7:30 tip from Quicken Loans Arena. The loss to the Clips was the Sixers'
second in a row, their first losing streak longer than a game of the
entire season. Impressive that they held out this long, but neither we
nor the team want to see it happen again anytime soon—or worse, continue
tonight. “It’s disappointing to lose two straight at home," said Elton
Brand after the loss. “We’ve got to regroup, go on the road and keep
growing.” See you there, EB.

Drexel falls to James Madison in potential CAA Tournament preview

Drexel falls to James Madison in potential CAA Tournament preview

BOX SCORE

Jackson Kent and Tom Vodanovich combined to score 31 points and James Madison held off Drexel late to secure a 70-64 victory Thursday night.

The game could be a preview of a first-round match-up in the Colonial Athletic Association Tournament. With one game left in the regular season, James Madison (9-21, 7-10) is the No. 7 seed and Drexel (9-21, 3-14) has locked up the No. 10 seed. Those seeds meet in the first round, with the winner facing the No. 2 seed in the second round.

Sammy Mojica hit a 3-pointer with :32 left to get the Dragons within four, 66-62, but Shakir Brown and Joey McLean each hit a pair of free throws to seal the victory.

Kent hit 6 of 11 from the floor and tallied 16 points with eight rebounds to lead the Dukes. Vodanovich added 15 points.

Kurk Lee and Mojica both scored 18 points off the Dragons' bench.

Conspiracy charge added for 3 former Penn State administrators

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Conspiracy charge added for 3 former Penn State administrators

HARRISBURG, Pa. -- A Pennsylvania judge on Thursday allowed prosecutors to add a conspiracy charge against three former Penn State administrators, increasing their possible penalty if convicted of crimes for their handling of the Jerry Sandusky child molestation scandal.

Judge John Boccabella granted a request by the attorney general's office to tack on a related conspiracy count to the charges of endangering the welfare of children.

Prosecutors said each felony count carries up to 7 years in prison and a $15,000 fine.

Jury selection is scheduled for March 20 in Harrisburg in the case of former university president Graham Spanier, former vice president Gary Schultz and former athletic director Tim Curley.

The defendants sought permission last week from Boccabella for an appeal that could delay the trial. The judge has not ruled on that request.

They argue Boccabella erred when he declined to dismiss the child-welfare charges, arguing the statute of limitations expired, the defendants did not provide direct care for children and they are charged with actions that occurred before the law was revised.

Earlier this month, the judge dismissed charges of failing to properly report suspected abuse, and last year the Superior Court threw out perjury, obstruction and conspiracy charges.

The three administrators fielded a complaint in 2001 from a graduate assistant who said he saw Sandusky, then retired as an assistant football coach, sexually abusing a boy in a team shower.

They did not report the matter to police or child welfare authorities, but did tell Sandusky he could no longer bring children to the campus and they notified his charity for children, The Second Mile.

Sandusky currently is serving a lengthy state prison term after being convicted in 2012 of 45 counts of sexual abuse of 10 boys.

Last week, a new judge appointed to preside over his appeals under the state's Post-Conviction Relief Act scheduled a March 24 hearing at the courthouse near State College to "present and finalize the evidentiary portion" of the hearing.